2. Set up a Windows restore point
System recovery can be a confusing topic for beginning users—and even plenty of experienced ones. One big source of confusion can be the differences among backups, restore points, and repair discs—and why they’re all essential. Here’s a thumbnail summary of the important setup steps for a brand-new PC, related to system recovery:
- Make sure you configure a backup, since that will archive your own documents, photos, and other personal files.
- Set a system restore point, since that will resolve problems with corrupt files.
- Create a system repair disc in case Windows 7 itself becomes corrupt. (More on that in Step 3.)
Once you’ve set up your backup scheme, you’ll want to cover that second bullet point: create a restore point in Windows. A restore point, established through Windows’ System Restore utility, saves your settings in the event that Windows cannot start and lets you revert to that earlier working state.
Click Start, type “create restore point” in the Search field, and select the option that appears. Now, click the Create button and follow the prompt to name the restore point and create it. Realize, though, that this does not actually back up your own data, such as documents and photos. A restore point is a good idea, but true backups are even more important.
A restore point is what Windows will use to get your PC back on its feet if the OS files become corrupted. It is essentially an automatic way for Windows 7 to recover, and the recovery process is mostly hands-off. If the OS ever does become corrupt, you will see a prompt as soon as you turn on the computer to use the restore point.
Once you configure both of these elements―backups and restore points―you’re ready to tackle the next initial essential: creating a boot disc.